Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Teach Your Children Well

What is remarkable in our age is not that half of our citizens believe it is wrong to kill the child in the womb, the child whose existence, except in the rare case of rape, is owing to our own voluntary actions.  That would be like congratulating ourselves for believing that it's wrong to steal someone's car, to lie under oath to hurt an enemy, to throw our aged parents into the street, or to desecrate churches.  Where is the great moral insight?  What's remarkable instead is that half of us believe it is all right to snuff out the life of that child – because nothing must be allowed to interfere with our “right” to pursue pleasure, as we use the child-making thing as a sweating-off spa on our way to money, prestige, a five-bathroom mansion for two, a tenured chair in Women's Studies, the mayoralty of Camden, another year of nights out on the town, whatever.

How have we come to this pass?  Our imaginations are stunted or diseased, that's how.  Continue reading

Anthony Esolen, "Tracts and sermons alone won’t form pro-life children. Here’s what will." Lifesite News, 7/29/14

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Don't Let Emotions Run Your Life

Having turned our backs on Judeo-Christian morality and the inner conscience that testifies to it, many of us rely on emotional feelings alone to guide our way through life.  So, if childhood problems cause us to grow up feeling uncomfortable as a man (or a woman), instead of looking within for understanding and healing, we undergo barbaric sex change operations, and “hormone therapy” and pretend we’re the opposite gender for the rest of our lives.  If we feel sexually attracted to the same gender, we convince ourselves this uprush of inner feeling — often rooted in something gone wrong in our formative years — is actually genetic, or God-ordained, or the expression of who we “really” are.  If we feel badly about having an unintended child growing inside us, instead of looking for a moral and life-affirming solution, we kill the child.

Of course, choosing what’s principled and perhaps self-sacrificial over our selfish feelings — that is, preferring something noble and higher over something ignoble and lower — implies there is a God, the source of the higher, was well as evil, the source of the lower.

But according to today’s secular, de facto atheistic worldview, there is no good or evil, no heaven or hell — we’re all just highly evolved animals.  If that’s true, however, there is just no logical reasons adults shouldn’t be able to have sex with children or whomever or whatever else they please.

David Kupelian, How Evil Works, p.40-41

Monday, July 28, 2014

A Problem with Day Care

The large body of research on separation anxiety in working mothers supports the view that maternal attachment increases with the time a mother spends with her baby, and decreases when she spends less time. Thus, programs that essentially relegate parents to the role of part-time caretakers [e.g. day care] may inadvertently subvert the parental competence and healthy family functioning they purport to promote.

Dana Mack, The Assault on Parenthood: How Our Culture Undermines the Family, p.186-187

Sunday, July 27, 2014

"Social Justice" is a Misnomer

In so far as the nebulous phrase “social justice” might have any discernible meaning, it seems to be that merely formal justice is not enough, but must be either supplemented or superseded by a kind of justice based on desirable social results.  In any event, the rule of law - “a government of laws and not of men”- is the antithesis of results-oriented “social justice,” for the results are to be chosen according to the preferences of particular individuals empowered to pick and choose desirable outcomes, rather than applying rules known in advance to all and binding on both citizens and judges.

Thomas Sowell, Intellectuals and Society, P.271

Saturday, July 26, 2014

"Which God Shall We Serve?"

We are contemplating whether we should place God and biblical morality in a neat little box labeled ‘religion’ or, as our founding fathers did, regard God and biblical morality as the core value for all of life.   It is imperative to know whether our god is the GOD of all time or a god created in modern man’s image, a got to be used merely as a photo ob or to justify our “enlightened” positions.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, America's Real War, p.49

Friday, July 25, 2014

Truth Cannot Be Divided

Those who hold to the divided concept of truth typically consider themselves open-minded and tolerant.  But in reality, they are imposing their own narrow, limited, culturally conditioned, secular view of truth on the rest of society.  Recovering the unity of truth is the key to renewal, both in the church and in the culture.

Nancy Pearcey, "Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, & Meaning,"  p.42

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Commerce Clause Abused by SCOTUS

Ever wonder how a federal law can prevent carrying a gun near a school?  Commerce clause.  Yep, a convoluted trail leading to the law being valid under the commerce clause of the Constitution.  Thomas Sowell cites Justice Stephen Breyer (on p.256 of “Intellectuals and Society”):

Possession of guns in schools means violence, and violence means poor education.  Poor education means an unproductive, noncompetitive workforce.  And that kind of workforce negatively affects not just one state but all states.  School violence, of which guns are a part, arguably presents a national problem warranting a national solution.

As Sowell points out, activist judges first decide WHAT they want to accomplish, and then wrangle the Constitution to accomplish their goals.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Evil of Eugenics

In a letter to the Human Betterment Federation of Des Moines in 1951, Margaret Sanger of Planned Parenthood urged that the unfit be sterilized, because their “children form our army of delinquents and become social burdens, ending their lives in institutions, such as reform schools and penitenturies [sic].”

By 1931, more than twelve thousand Americans had been sterilized under various state laws, a figure that rose to more than sixty thousand by 1958.

John G. West, "Darwin Day in America: How our politics and culture have been dehumanized in the name of science," p.88

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Welfare Becomes Slavery

State welfare…tends to create a permanently dependent class, really a new type of slavery.  The essence of slavery is being dependent on someone or some entity for one’s livelihood, and all forms of slavery demoralize human beings.  Thus, enforced social welfare programs, which at first may appear altruistic and generous, are, in the long run, often detrimental.  As George Gilder says, “Excessive welfare hurts its recipients, demoralizing them or reducing them to an addictive dependency that can ruin their lives.”

Alvin J. Schmidt, Under the Influence: How Christianity Transformed Civilization, p. 146-147

Monday, July 21, 2014

"Brain Dysfunction" is Only in the USA

Not surprisingly, the use of Ritalin in the United States has increased by more than 700 percent since 1990, as more than six million children between the ages of 3 and 18 have been labeled mentally ill and medicated with the psychotropic drug.  No other country in the world diagnoses its children with mental illness in this way.  Only American children appear to be suffering from an epidemic of “brain dysfunction” that has not yet begun to affect the children of Europe or Asia or Africa.  Today, more than 90 percent of the world’s supply of Ritalin is being used on American children. … 

In addition to Ritalin, there has been an increase in the use of other psychotropic drugs on children.  Between 1995 and 1999, stimulant drug use went up 23 percent.  The use of Prozac-like drugs for children under 18 went up 74 percent; in the 7-12 age group it rose 151 percent; for children under 6 it climbed up an astonishing 580 percent.  For children under 18 the use of mood stabilizers is up 4,000 percent and the use of new antipsychotic medications such as Risperdal has grown nearly 300 percent. . . .

A diagnosis of a brain dysfunction, moreover, removes any responsibility for the child’s behavior from the parents.  It is not their fault that their child is unhappy, is doing poorly in school, and cannot sit still in class; it is the child’s faulty brain function.  And so parents embrace a chemical shortcut to the behavior modification that in the past was recognized as a family duty.

Anne Hendershott, The Politics of Deviance, p. 51, 52

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Is Your Reason Replaced By Emotion?

There is a big difference between processing information on a printed page and assimilating data conveyed through a series of moving pictures.  Images have a way of evoking an emotional response.  Pictures are effective at pushing rational discourse — linear logic — into the background.  The chief aim of television is to sell products and entertain audiences.  Generally speaking, television seeks to provide emotional gratification.  As a visual medium, its programming is designed to be amusing.  Substance gives way to sounds and sights.  Stirring feelings obscure hard facts.  Dramatic images drown out important issues.  Emotion replaces reason.

Arthur W. Hunt III, “Tomorrowland:  The Future Is Here — Isn’t It Mesmerizing?”  Christian Research Journal, Vol. 23/No. 1, p. 38

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Activist Judges Make the U.S.A an Oligarchy

While there are many controversies over particular aspects of the law, the most fundamental controversy has long been over who should control the law and who should change the law.  American intellectuals, since at least the middle of the twentieth century, have overwhelmingly favored expansion of the role of judges, beyond that of applying laws created by others, to themselves remaking the law to “fit the times” - which is to say, making the law fit the prevailing vision of the times, the vision of the anointed intellectuals.

Where the Constitution of the United States is a barrier to this expanded role of judges, then judges have been urged to “interpret” the Constitution as a set of values to be applied as judges choose, or updated as they think appropriate, rather than as a set of specific instructions to be followed.  That is what “judicial activism” means, though verbal virtuosity has managed to confuse that meaning with other meanings.

Thomas Sowell, Intellectuals and Society, p.254

Friday, July 18, 2014

Common Sense and Homosexuality

Virtually all societies throughout history have condemned homosexuality.  Why is this true?  How plausible is it to assume that virtually every society in the history of mankind has come to the same conclusion about homosexuality by chance?  Statistically, the chances of this conclusion are infinitesimal.  It is much more plausible to believe that they have come to the same conclusion because they've all been endowed with the same self-evident moral values, which are derived from the standard we've been calling "the Moral Law."  In other words, societies throughout history have condemned homosexuality precisely because this moral intuition has evoked a sense of guilt in those who practice it.

Dr. Norman Geisler & Frank Turek, "Legislating Morality," p.149

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Intellectuals and Violence

The hideous crimes committed in Cambodia from April 1975 onwards, which involved the deaths of between a fifth and a third of the population, were organized by a group of Francophone middle-class intellectuals known as the Angka Leu ("the Higher Organization").  Of its eight leaders, five were teachers, one a university professor, one a civil servant and one an economist....

The association of intellectuals with violence occurs too often to be dismissed as an aberration.  Often it takes the form of admiring those"men of action" who practise violence.  Mussolini had an astonishing number of intellectual followers, by no means all of them Italian.  In his ascent to power, Hitler consistently was most successful on the campus, his electoral appeal to students regularly outstripping his performance among the population as a whole.  He always performed well among teachers and university professors.  Many intellectuals were drawn into the higher echelons of the Nazi Party and participated in the more gruesome excesses of the SS.  Thus the four Einsatzgruppen or mobile killing battalions which were the spearhead of Hitler’s "final solution" in Eastern Europe contained an unusually high proportion of university graduates among the officers.  Otto Ohlendorf, who commanded "D" Battalion, for instance, had degrees from three universities and a doctorate in jurisprudence.  Stalin, too, had legions of intellectual admirers in his time, as did such post-war men of violence as Castro, Nasser and Mao Tse-tung.

Paul Johnson, “Intellectuals,” cited by Thomas Sowell, Intellectuals and Society p.236-237

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

The Ten Cannots

You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. 
You cannot help small men by tearing down big men. 
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. 
You cannot lift the wage-earner by pulling down the wage-payer. 
You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich. 
You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. 
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. 
You cannot establish security on borrowed money. 
You cannot build character and courage by taking away men's initiative and independence. 
You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Pornographic Culture

Reflecting on where we have come, Maggie Gallagher wrote: "Sex was remade in the image of Hugh Hefner; Eros demoted from a god to a buffoon.  Over the last thirty years, America transformed itself into a pornographic culture."  Gallagher accepted Angela Carter's definition, stated in somewhat more basic Anglo-Saxon, that pornography is basically propaganda for fornication, and offered a definition of her own: "[A] pornographic culture is not one in which pornographic materials are published and distributed.  A pornographic culture is one which accepts the ideas about sex on which pornography is based."

Robert H. Bork, "Slouching Towards Gomorrah," p.138-139

Monday, July 14, 2014

Proper Sexuality Requires Proper Spirituality

Without the understanding of our spiritual origin and destiny - of who we are and what purpose our maker intended for us - we can't possibly understand sex and its intended role in our lives.  Instead, all we have driving us are the desires, the physical and emotional "needs," cravings, and compulsions we find welling up from within us.

Sometimes these desires are normal, the kind of sexual attraction to the opposite gender that God ordained, leading to bonding and marriage and children.  But for some of us, our sexual cravings are rooted in trauma, that is, generated from our emotional reactions to the cruelty, confusion, and seduction we've experienced along the path of life.  Remember, pain causes us to seek the relief of pleasure.

David Kupelian, How Evil Works, p.39

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sex "Education" Increases Sexual Immorality

For over a decade before the introduction of comprehensive sexuality education in the early 1970s . . .  teen pregnancy rates had been falling.  But with the infusion of federal funds into comprehensive sex education, pregnancy rates rose rapidly.  In the late 1970s alone, the teen pregnancy rate rose from 88 to 111 per 1,000 women, and the percentage of girls between fifteen and nineteen years of age who had engaged in intercourse skyrocketed from 27.6 to 42.2.

What happened next makes it difficult to attribute those increases to other factors, such as the general loosening of sexual mores in the culture at large.  In the early 1980s, the Reagan administration blocked federal funding for comprehensive sexuality education and passed federal regulations requiring parental notification when contraceptive services were rendered to teenagers.  Teenage sexual activity and pregnancy rates dropped radically.  Among young black women, the group most vulnerable to early, out-of-wedlock childbearing, sexual activity rates fell by mid-decade to below pre-1971 levels.  As funding for comprehensive sex education resumed in the mid-1980s, pregnancy and teen sexual activity rates shot up once again. . . .

The crux of the problem with comprehensive sex education . . . was freewheeling classroom sex talk that broke down all barriers of social and sexual inhibition.  Inhibition . . . is the safety valve that keeps teenagers from the obvious risks of casual sexual involvement.

Dana Mack, The Assault on Parenthood: How Our Culture Undermines the Family, p.157-159

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Culture War

This time the culture war, thankfully, is not a bloody one [referring to the Civil War].  That makes it no less a war that will, in the end, yield a victor and a loser.  The two ideas struggling for supremacy in society today cannot coexist.  One needs to dominate. What are these two ideas?

Reduced to their simplest elements, one idea claims that public adherence to biblical values and acceptance of traditional godly direction are essential for the continued existence of this country.  The opposing view is that such religion, while perhaps laudable for individuals, is an impediment to progress in the public arena.

What do I believe is meant by the phrase “culture war”?  Author Russell Kirk was once asked the source of humankind’s many cultures.  His reply was that they originally came from cults.  While the word “cult” has not taken on a negative connotation, it originally meant a joining together for worship — that is, the attempt of people to commune with a transcendent power.  Therefore, when we say that people are unified by a common culture, what we really mean is that they share the same general view of God and His expectations.  Conversely, when we speak of a culture war, we are referring to a great rift over the issue of God.  What does this have to do with most Americans?  The role of God in society is somehow similar to that of sewers, telephone lines and gas pipes.  We don’t see them running invisibly beneath our streets.  We seldom even think about them.  However, their sudden removal would dramatically and horribly impact our lives.  Likewise, we never used to think about the invisible structure of morality and logic that lay reassuringly beneath our culture.  Now, however, it is being ripped up.

Rabbi Daniel Lapin, America's Real War, p.45-46

Friday, July 11, 2014

Cultural Diversity?

To automatically and non-judgmentally celebrate cultural "diversity" is to refuse to confront consequences that can affect not only the lives of individuals but the fate of society as a whole.  However clever tactical agnosticism may be as an exercise in verbal virtuosity, would anyone say that Nazism was just Hitler’s "lifestyle"?  Or would the consequences be too overwhelming to be finessed aside with a few phrases?  Non-judgmentalism is one of the most dangerous of all the arguments without arguments, for no reason is given for being non-judgmental*, unless endless repetition or peer consensus are considered to be reasons.

*To justify non-judgmentalism would be to violate the premise of non-judgmentalism itself, for it would say it is not just different to be non-judgmental, but better.

Thomas Sowell, Intellectuals and Society. p.225

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

In a moral Vacuum, Power and Doubt Rule All

One of the disastrous effects of allegedly morals-free legislation is that it tends to produce deep and widespread doubt in persons across the culture about what is right and wrong, which leaves only a resort to power as a way out of our moral dilemmas.  In a moral vacuum, power and doubt rule all.  Doubt makes us unsure of ourselves and our beliefs; power makes those who have it despotic rulers over those who do not.  Without morality in law, we know less well and less surely what is right.  If we are ignorant about what is right and wrong, we can raise no compelling argument against evil, or even know it when we see it.  Our ignorance makes it so.

Michael Bauman, “Separating Morality From Law,” Christian Research Journal, Vol. 21/No. 3, p.40

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Moral Outcomes Need Previous Cultivation

Moral outcomes are not to be expected from a legal system into which morality was never programmed, never cultivated.  Except by the happiest of chances, moral results — in other words, just results — do not grow from a field in which those seeds were never planted and nurtured.  If a society neglects to plant morality in the legal code, they must not expect to harvest it in court, or in the character of those citizens whose moral nurture is provided partly by the laws of the society in which they are raised.

Michael Bauman, “Separating Morality From Law,” Christian Research Journal, Vol. 21/No. 3, p.39

Monday, July 7, 2014

Stupid Arguments For Free Birth Control

Okay, look. Back in the day, the Sexual Revolutionaries told the State to get out of their bedrooms. And they did. But now, they want everyone back in the bedroom—approving of whatever sexual expression is taking place and paying for pills and rubbers to ensure that all the sex they’re having stays nice and sterile. If we don’t want to pay for such things and make the apparently offensive suggestion that the women who desire them are independent enough to obtain these products for themselves, we get berated by women like Jessica Valenti of the The Guardian, who gravely informs her readers that, “The Hobby Lobby ruling proves men of the law still can't get over 'immoral' women having sex.” Uh, no. Actually, it proves that people like Jessica Valenti can’t get over the idea that she has to fund her own sex life.

Jonathon Van Maren, “The 3 stupidest arguments made by pro-aborts against the Hobby Lobby decision,”, 7 Jul 2014

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Morality of the Law Becomes Morality of the People

The morality in the law, whatever it might be, tends to become the morality of the people.  Law is always a tutor to morals and a shaper of national character, both for good and ill.

Michael Bauman, “Separating Morality From Law,” Christian Research Journal, Vol. 21/No. 3, p.36

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Don't Complain That Laws Are Morals-Based

People tend to complain that laws are morals-based only when the law in question is based upon a moral valuation with which they disagree.  To be consistent, those who object to morals-based laws would have to raise the same objection to all laws whatsoever, including the laws they themselves support.  But they do not.  They never do.  When their own morals are encoded in law, they raise not even the faintest whimper of protest.  Yet when laws are passed that they dislike, they say almost nothing else.

Michael Bauman, “Separating Morality From Law,” Christian Research Journal, Vol. 21/No. 3, p.22

Friday, July 4, 2014

Families with Mother and Father are Best

To say that marriage, for example, is just one of a spectrum of lifestyles that individuals may choose is not only to state an empirical fact but to evade the question of the consequences that follow from these various lifestyle choices, not only to the individuals who choose them but for others, including a whole society.  Marriage and other living arrangements, after all, can produce children -- people who did not have a choice of what kind of living arrangement to be born into and raised within.  Empirical consequences of raising children in different lifestyles include not only higher rates of poverty in single-parent homes and costs to taxpayers who end up having to support many children raised in such homes, but also other third parties who become victims of higher crime rates by people who were raised in single-parent homes.  When poverty rates among black married couples have been in single digits, every year since 1994, this suggests that some lifestyle choices are not only different from others but produce better consequences.

Thomas Sowell, Intellectuals and Society, p. 224

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Religious Parents Lose Their Children to the Culture

Parents invest enormous amounts of time, money, and emotional energy into raising their children, only to lose them to secular world views pounded into their minds through public education and the entertainment culture.  A study in Britain found that non-religious parents have a near 100% chance of passing on their views to their children, whereas religious parents have only about a 50/50 chance of passing on their views.

Nancy Pearcey, "Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, & Meaning,"  p.13

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Results of Evolutionism

Although eugenics is sometimes regarded as a perversion of Darwinian biology, Charles Darwin himself praised the idea of voluntary eugenic restrictions on marriage in The Descent of Man . . ., and his sons George and Leonard actively promoted the eugenics agenda, with Leonard becoming the president of the Eugenics Education Society, the main eugenics group in Great Britain.

But it was Darwin's cousin Francis Galton who is justly considered the founder of the modern eugenics crusade.  Inspired by The Origin of the Species, Galton set about to apply his cousin Charles' theory to the rise of human genius.  After researching the family connections of members of the British elite, Galton announced in articles and then in books that intellectual and artistic talent was largely hereditary.  Thus, if society wanted to guarantee its future improvement, it needed more children from the "fit" and fewer from the "unfit."  By the 1880s, Galton had coined the term eugenics (adapted from a Greek root meaning "good in birth") and was urging efforts to improve the race through better breeding.

While Galton stressed the need for positive eugenics (in order to cultivate the geniuses needed for society to thrive and progress), he also favored negative eugenic measures and thought that those deemed unfit could be segregated in institutions where they would not be allowed to reproduce.

John G. West, "Darwin Day in America: How our politics and culture have been dehumanized in the name of science," p.86-87

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Abortion is Child Murder

I deplore the horrible crime of child murder . . . No matter what motive, love of ease, or a desire to save from suffering the unborn innocent, the woman is awfully guilty who commits the deed; . . . but oh! thrice guilty is he who for selfish gratification . . . drove her to the desperation which impelled her to the crime.

Susan B. Anthony,  "Marriage and Family," The Revolution, 8 July 1869, cited by Alvin J. Schmidt in "Under the Influence: How Christianity Transformed Civilization," p.60